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WNBA Free Agency 2021: As the WNBA rosters turn

WNBA free agency in 2021 already has featured blockbuster player movement and Mikiah Herbert Harrigan and Katie Lou Samuelson to the Seattle Storm are just the latest. But many top-tier players remain unsigned. The free agency signing period began Feb. 1 and Swish Appeal is tracking the 12 teams’ rosters — all one one page.

Washington Mystics v Minnesota Lynx - Game Two
Natasha Cloud (left), a champion in 2019, and four-time champion and future Hall of Famer Seimone Augustus are just two players still without contracts two weeks into 2021’s WNBA free agency signing period.
Photo by Jordan Johnson/NBAE via Getty Images

The Seattle Storm have Sue Bird to thank for the franchise’s four championships. Now, the franchise must pay — and likely a supermax salary to their 40-year-old star. The team cored Natasha Howard, the 2019 Defensive Player of the Year, who helped the team to titles in 2018 and 2020. So, re-signing Alysha Clark — the authoritative specialist of shutdown defense who was a major contributor to the Storm’s title chase in recent years — wasn’t in the cards. Now, Clark is headed to the Washington Mystics ready to drive her former team’s offense into tatters as she pursues a third championship while helping the Mystics to a franchise second.

Other marquee free agency moves already have teams looking very different this year, with a good number of players joining forces with once-bitter rivals.

NEW (2/10/21)! Though the rivalry didn’t have a chance to turn tart yet, Katie Lou Samuelson (picked No. 4 overall in the 2019 WNBA Draft) and Mikiah Herbert Harrigan (picked No. 6 overall in the 2020 WNBA Draft) — both competitive ballers — were shipped to the Storm by the Dallas Wings and the Minnesota Lynx, respectively, as Seattle looks towards youth — and less expensive contracts (which would be needed to bring Bird back).

And with a flurry of signings this free agency, Minnesota needed to trim away some of its talent, especially in the frontcourt, and Dallas needed to make room for the No. 1 pick in the 2021 draft to go along with the No. 2 pick it already had acquired.

NEW (2/4/21)! Yet, the fates of many more players remain up in the air during this early stage of the the 2021 free agency signing period. Some players’ names have been removed from the rosters of teams they played for in 2020, indicating ongoing contract negotiation, wavering commitment by the team on whether to bring those players back and/or other unknown factors. Thus, players whose names no longer are listed on the teams they played for last season are listed beneath each team’s roster.

NEW (2/15/21)! As we begin the third week of WNBA free agency, several of the league’s impact players, including a few champions, remain without contracts. Bird has not re-signed with the Storm yet, but it should be assumed that she will, if she wishes. Outside of the four-time champion, the following free agents have yet to sign contracts to play in the WNBA in 2021 (in alphabetical order):

Seimone Augustus (Sparks, four-time champion with Lynx, long-time veteran)

Essence Carson (long-time veteran with postseason experience)

Natasha Cloud (Mystics, 2019 champion and face of WNBA social justice movement, entering sixth year)

Bria Holmes (Sun, injury cut her 2020 season short, entering fifth year)

Emma Meesseman (Mystics, 2019 champion and Finals MVP, entering eighth season)

Kaleena Mosqueda-Lewis (Sun, 2019 champion with Storm, entering sixth year)

Aerial Powers (Mystics, 2019 champion)

Jessica Shepard (Lynx, formed promising duo with Napheesa Collier in 2019 before injury cut her rookie season short)

Kristi Toliver (Sparks, long-time veteran, two-time champion with Sparks and Mystics)

Shatori Walker-Kimbrough (Mercury, 2019 champion with Mystics, entering fifth season)

As the WNBA rosters continue to turn, Swish Appeal will keep track and publish updates.

The changing roster spots of the WNBA’s 12 teams:

Atlanta Dream

Monique Billings

Brittany Brewer

Kalani Brown

Chennedy Carter

Tianna Hawkins (from Mystics)

Cheyenne Parker (from Sky)

Shekinna Stricklen

Yvonne Turner (from Mercury — exclusive negotiating rights)

Courtney Williams

Elizabeth William

Played for the Dream in 2020 and not currently listed on this or another roster:

Jaylyn Agnew

Maite Cazorla

Kaela Davis

Blake Dietrick

Glory Johnson

Renee Montgomery (retirement)

Chicago Sky

Brittany Boyd (training camp contract)

Kahleah Copper

Diamond DeShields

Stefanie Dolson

Kiah Gillespie (waived)

Ruthy Hebard

Stephanie Mavunga

Candace Parker (from Sparks)

Allie Quigley

Azurá Stevens

Courtney Vandersloot

Gabby Williams

Played for the Sky in 2020 and not currently listed on this or another roster:

Sydney Colson

Alexis Prince

Connecticut Sun

Morgan Bertsch (training camp contract)

DeWanna Bonner

Kaila Charles

Natisha Hiedeman (training camp contract)

Briann January

Brionna Jones

Beatrice Mompremier (training camp contract)

Kamiah Smalls (training camp contract)

Alyssa Thomas

Jasmine Thomas

Sydney Wallace (training camp contract)

Played for the Sun in 2020 and not currently listed on this or another roster:

Essence Carson

Bria Holmes

Kaleena Mosqueda-Lewis

Theresa Plaisance

Dallas Wings

Bella Alarie

Allisha Gray

Megan Gustafson

Tyasha Harris

Isabelle Harrison

Moriah Jefferson

Marina Mabrey

Astou Ndour

Arike Ogunbowale

Satou Sabally

Kayla Thornton

Played for the Wings in 2020 and not currently listed on this or another roster:


Indiana Fever

Julie Allemand

Lindsay Allen (from Aces)

Jessica Breland (from Phoenix Mercury)

Kennedy Burke

Lauren Cox

Kathleen Doyle

Temi Fagbenle (from Lynx — exclusive negotiating rights)

Jantel Lavender (from Sky)

Teaira McCowan

Tiffany Mitchell

Kelsey Mitchell

Chanelle Molina (training camp contract)

Danielle Robinson (from Aces)

Victoria Vivians

Played for the Fever in 2020 and not currently listed on this or another roster:

Odyssey Sims (via trade from Lynx, waived 2/15)

Las Vegas Aces

Liz Cambage*

Emma Cannon (training camp contract)

Chelsea Gray (from Sparks)

Dearica Hamby

Angel McCoughtry

Kelsey Plum

Riquna Williams (from Sparks)

A’ja Wilson

Jackie Young

Played for the Aces in 2020 and not currently listed on this or another roster:

Cierra Burdick

Sugar Rodgers

Carolyn Swords

Los Angeles Sparks

Kristine Anigwe

Te’a Cooper (training camp contract)

Marie Gülich

Nneka Ogwumike

Tierra Ruffin-Pratt

Brittney Sykes

Erica Wheeler (from Fever)

Sydney Wiese

Amanda Zahui B. (from Liberty)

Played for the Sparks in 2020 and not currently listed on this or another roster:

Seimone Augustus

Reshanda Gray

Kristi Toliver

Minnesota Lynx

Natalie Achonwa (from Fever)

Rachel Banham

Lexie Brown

Bridget Carleton (training camp contract)

Napheesa Collier

Crystal Dangerfield

Damiris Dantas

Sylvia Fowles

Linnae Harper (training camp contract)

Kayla McBride (from Aces)

Aerial Powers (from Washington Mystics)

Played for the Lynx in 2020 and not currently listed on this or another roster:

Kayla Alexander

Shenise Johnson

Jessica Shepard

New York Liberty

Layshia Clarendon

Asia Durr

Joyner Holmes

Natasha Howard (from Storm)

Sabrina Ionescu

Jazmine Jones

Betnijah Laney (from Dream)

Leaonna Odom

Kylee Shook

Kiah Stokes

Sami Whitcomb (from Storm)

Jocelyn Willoughby

Played for the Liberty in 2020 and not currently listed on this or another roster:

Paris Kea

Phoenix Mercury

Sophie Cunningham

Skylar Diggins-Smith

Brittney Griner

Bria Hartley

Kia Nurse (from Liberty)

Shey Peddy (training camp contract)

Alanna Smith

Diana Taurasi

Brianna Turner

Kia Vaughn

Megan Walker (from Liberty)

Played for the Mercury in 2020 and not currently listed on this or another roster:

Nia Coffey (waived on 2/11)

Alisia Jenkins

Shatori Walker-Kimbrough (qualifying offer rescinded on 2/5)

Seattle Storm

Jordin Canada

Candice Dupree (from Fever)

Mikiah Herbert Harrigan (from Lynx)

Crystal Langhorne (retirement)

Jewell Loyd

Ezi Magbegor

Epiphanny Prince

Mercedes Russell

Katie Lou Samuelson (from Wings)

Breanna Stewart

Stephanie Talbot (training camp contract)

Morgan Tuck

Tamera Young (training camp contract)

Played for the Storm in 2020 and not currently listed on this or another roster:

Sue Bird

Washington Mystics

Ariel Atkins

Tina Charles

Alysha Clark (from Storm)

Elena Delle Donne

Jacki Gemelos (training camp contract)

Myisha Hines-Allen

Stella Johnson (training camp contract)

Kiara Leslie

Erica McCall (via trade from Lynx for 2022 draft pick)

Leilani Mitchell

LaToya Sanders

Sug Sutton (training camp contract)

Played for the Mystics in 2020 and not currently listed on this or another roster:

Natasha Cloud

Alaina Coates

Emma Meesseman

*Player has been “cored” by the team.

This story was originally published on Monday, Feb. 1, 2021 at 9:00 a.m. Eastern. It has been updated with new content, marked NEW! and further updated to reflect ongoing player movement as the free agency signing period progresses. It will continue to be updated as player movement happens and news is made available.